Bloody Rock

Is where I was this weekend.

For those of you who don’t know where Bloody Rock is, it’s way the fuck out the Eel river, and it’s beautiful. You drive for hours and then you hike out about two miles into splendid wilderness, and it’s awesome. I had a wonderful time, every second, with fabulous people. I can’t really explain where it was because it was out miles of dirt roads and I was too busy trying to distract the driver to pay any attention whatsoever to where we were going. But it’s sort of near Lake Pillsbury, if you know where that is, in the Mendocino National Forest. We were actually in the Game Reserve. Which is not, in fact, a place where you play Scrabble all the time, much to my disappointment.

The most important point of the trip for you, dear readers, also forms a crisis which one of you may be able to solve:

Imagine this. It’s 105 degrees. Your girl heroine has just dropped her backpack on a sandy beach and stripped while running full tilt into the water. She is briskly refreshed by the waters and emerges to grab summer weight clothing and sally forth on an adventure with a cohort.

Cohort falls, fantastically and beautifully, into a very deep pool of water. Your girl heroine reaches for her camera…

And realizes it’s in the pocket of the cohort’s army jacket, currently eight feet under water.

The camera was dried with all components removed, and it’s official: the loyal Canon A80 is dead. Finito. Over. An expensive paperweight. A few tears were shed out in the wilderness, I admit, raising the question: if a blogger cries over her camera while her cohort is flailing around in the Eel river, does anyone hear it?

So if any one of you happens to have an extra digital camera sitting around, or you love me a lot, please let me know, because I loved my Canon very much, and I also loved taking pictures for you all. I’m going to try and see if the flash card is salvageable, in which case there will be some awesome photos of Bloody Rock for you. But right now, I am a very sad person.

It was still really, really funny, though.

Some other highlights of the trip:

  • So, I think I may have gotten a little heat stroke. There was a time for about two hours when I was reeling around utterly incapable of making rational decisions and thinking I wanted to vomit but not being able to. Luckily I was intelligent enough to find shade and demand water. In case you ever find yourself, or a companion, in this situation, it’s very important to get cooled down in water, get into the shade, and drink some water. If vomiting or unconsciousness occurs, seek professional medical help, because heat stroke is really, really dangerous.
  • The amazing swimming hole at our campsite. There was a beautiful diving rock which we dove off again and again, sometimes synchronized for bonus points. It was a beautiful thing. The water was so wonderful and warm that I went swimming at midnight, and again in the morning.
  • The trail. Although I bitched mightily with my laden pack on my back, it was beautiful, and kept opening up to amazing views. Some of which may or may not be recoverable from my flash card. But they were…wow. Oh my god. Wow. So beautiful.
  • Getting into the water after a long hike, and then eating apricots in the sun.
  • Story hour around the fireplace.

So, aside from the tragedy and my near death, it was an awesome trip. We played infinite questions on the car ride home. (They had a heck of a time guessing “brittle star” on one of my turns.) It was good times.

I had forgotten how much I missed camping out in the back country, even though I got sunburned and dirty. The company was wonderful, the trip was awesome, and I’m raring to go again next weekend. I’m not sure where, yet, but somewhere. Yeah.

Camping. It’s what’s for dinner.

[camping]